Why am I still single? It’s the question I was asked one Sunday night while entertaining a new face at Starbucks. We had been conversing about our super powers and she couldn’t understand why I was still single? When she asked me the question, I had to pause for a few moments. I had been on dates before but I never really entertained the question in its true form. I began thinking to myself, “What’s wrong with me?” I mean, I’m a pretty decent dude in my mind. I mean, I’m not the ugliest thing in the world! I can cook more than Ramen noodles and spaghetti. I’ve been told that I’m the second coming of Gerald Levert but don’t have a record deal. I’m pretty active in the lives of my children. I have goals and ambitions that I’m currently trying to achieve. I’m employed and make decent money. I have my own place. And still . . . . . . . I’m single. Yep. And I still think to myself that Biggie had Faith and Kim . . . at the same time . . . . . .
So as I was finishing my frap, she was still looking at me for an answer. And like most of us, I initially answered “I don’t know”. But as I thought for a few more seconds, I retracted my earlier response and told her the truth. “Honestly, I haven’t had the ability to maintain a healthy relationship due to past hurts until now. I had to learn to trust females again”. The young lady looked at me and was amazed. Of course I had to explain my previous relationship and how it left me scarred to the point I had to seek counseling. I was amazed that I answered so truthful. I guess it was my futile attempt at being vulnerable. She pretended to be impressed with my answer but I haven’t heard from her since aside from a few hellos that I initiated via text. Guess it was too much honesty on the first date. . . . . . . .
The question I asked that Sunday night stayed with me for quite a while as I drove back home. The thought wouldn’t leave me as I attempted to make sense of how why so many people who state that they want happiness are still single. So, like a good writer, I posed the question to my Facebook focus group. The question in itself got close to two hundred comments with people giving a multitude of excuses as to why they were single. Answers like “I don’t date often”, “I haven’t met anyone”, “I’m not settling for just anyone”, padded the timeline. (I would like to mention that ninety percent of the comments were given by females but that will be for another blog). However, when I asked the question as to how singles who wanted to be in relationships were actually dealing with their issues, only a handful responded. Of the handful only two admitted to going to counseling, myself included. Hmmmmm . . . . . . .
How do we have so many issues and grievances about dating but refuse to do anything about it? It’s like that clawing pain in your chest that makes you short of breath every time you sit up but you reject the fact that something is actually wrong with you. I’m of the belief that many of us are afraid of success. As I read through the countless justifications from the focus group, it lead me back to this very conclusion. Whether we are conscious of it or not, we are being conditioned to be mediocre. Media and greed drive the mediocrity in our day to day lives and it’s surfacing in our relationships. Why else would we have all these astronomical expectations and then cry when they are not met? Why else would we friendzone a person who knows us, flaws and all, yet loves us anyway?
Now I know my religious sect is saying that tired old line of “I’m waiting on my Boaz”. Well my question to you is what are you doing to prepare for him? If you have constraints from a previous relationship, you will miss out on Boaz because you think that he is supposed to be a six foot eight basketball player making millions of dollars (see Basketball Wives, Love and Hip Hop Atlanta, etc.). Fellas in the same breath you will miss out on Ruth because you think she is supposed to be built like Meagan Good, sex like Jazmine Cashmere, and bring in money like Beyonce’ (see any hip hop video).
While we have our preferences, a compliment to who you are is what’s needed. You know, that “make it easy to take it easy”? That mental stimulation that keeps you when your “blessings” are no longer valuable to the common public? Yeah, that real Black love. It’s not just a fairy tale. It’s real . . . . if you want to be successful. . . . . . .
“I just wanna be, I just wanna be successful . . . . . “